WHITE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - A new district is looking for a new representative. District 25 was reworked during the 2011 session. It is now a mainly rural district which includes White, Carroll, Cass and Clinton counties, and a part of Tippecanoe County. Current District 15 Republican Representative Don Lehe is running against 22-year-old Democrat Shane Evans.
Lehe chose to run in District 25 because it now houses his home county of White County. Evans and Lehe are both focusing on education. Lehe believes his years as a school teacher and as a state representative give him the experience to budget beneficially for education this fiscal year.
Evans, who graduated from Wabash College in May, said he has seen the education needs first hand.
"We need to get Indiana's public and private colleges together, and try to get a standardized test of their core curriculum," Evans said. "We can give a test, and students can get college credit."
"[We need] more dollars in the classroom and less emphasis on bricks and mortar," Lehe said.
Lehe said his life spent in rural Brookston, Ind., gives him an advantage when it comes to the rural district. One issue he said he has heard from district residents are the poor rural roads.
"We've got to develop some way of financing these all important issues," Lehe said. "[For example] rural roads, how do we maintain those rural roads? How do we develop improvements to those rural roads?"
Evans also wants to focus on infrastructure, and how it can create jobs in the district. Evans, who lives in Delphi, Ind., is eager to see the impact of the newly opened section of the Hoosier Heartland Highway.
"A lot of businesses are looking for efficient ways to transport their goods," Evans said. "When the portion from Delphi to Logansport gets done you're going to be able to send goods all the way to Fort Wayne, or even Toledo and those larger markets."
Lehe and Evans have many years separating them, but both see that as an advantage.
"I think a lot of people are weary about the incumbents, and the way the political system has gone the last 10 or 15 years," Evans said. "[There's been] a packed system and so much special interest money being given to candidates."
"I think people have seen what has happened in the last eight to 10 years," Lehe said. "They see we are so much better shaped than most states in the country, and the midwest."
Current District 25 Representative Jeb Bardon chose not to run for re-election.
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